Nearly every day last summer from July 1 until almost Labor Day, I picked at least one or more zucchini squash. I had piles of them on the kitchen table and took bags of them into work.
“Would you like some zucchini?” was my morning greeting to my co-workers. Not “good morning”, not “How are you today”. It was all about getting people to take some zucchini. It got to the point where people would see me coming with my bags of zucchini and walk away from me, fast.
So I made a mental note that this year I should maybe not plant eight hills of squash.
But you know how it is with mental notes. They are soon conveniently forgotten. At least I forgot that I had planned to plant less zucchini when I ordered my seeds a few weeks ago.
For the 2008 garden, I’m going to plant ‘Cue Ball’ again. I grew these round zucchini last year for the first time, and loved them. They grow quickly and as noted in the seed catalog, you can harvest a squash or two or six almost daily. I don’t know how the plant produces fruit that fast, but it does.
I’ll also plant the ‘traditional’ shaped zucchini; ‘Ambassador’ for green, and ‘Gold Rush’ for yellow. These should start producing about two weeks after I harvest the first ‘Cue Ball’ zucchini.
And because ‘Cue Ball’ was so good last year, I decided to also try ‘Eight Ball’, another round squash.
Lest you think I’m out of control with squash, please know that I did decide not to plant ‘Gold Bar’ again. It was a good squash but I had to drop one of the varieties to make room for ‘Eight Ball’.
So doing the math… last year I planted four varieties, I’m dropping one this year, then adding a new one, so that means I’m cutting back to… four varieties. I’ll plant two hills of each variety, so that makes eight hills of squash which means…
Put in your requests now for some of my zucchini, I should have plenty of it this summer.
Though I’m pretty much set with my zucchini varieties for this summer, if you have another variety you’d like to recommend, let me know. I can always adjust my plan and plant one or two more hills of zucchini, and then blame whoever convinces me to try another variety for any excess I have.
I remember your champion zucchini growing, Carol! I plan to put in ONE Plant. That should keep us and the neighbours in chocolate cake and muffins and stir fries and….for a long time.
Robin's Nesting Place says
I wish I lived closer, I’d take some of your zucchini. I doubt I could eat nearly enough to help you out too much though.
I would be happy to take some of the cue balls off your hands. I have never tried them and would like too.
– Eric S.
Maybe we need to start a garden blogger transport system so that you could ship anywhere in North America for a flat rate … we’d all get to try out your Zucchini.
Your post reminds me of a card I once received picturing a woman with Zucchini overtaking her kitchen.
It does seen that their is a glut of zucchini each year as I remember reading many blogs were they had much the same problem, some even resorted to leaving them on their neighbours door step or employing their children to distribute them, all very amusing.
We would love to have all the zucchini you could supply. Last year we got none! This year I am trying eight ball also, and Magda, a variety I saw mentioned on chuck b.’s site. Do you fertilize or can you give any growing tips? How do you keep the squash bugs off, our biggest problem?
Frances at Faire Garden
Maybe you could grow squash for me and we could give you bread in return. Last year I found a really good recipe that has pineapple in it. Then, I could devote my zucchini garden space to something else. I am thinking of trying some gourds to use in crafts.
Kathy, the older sister
Of course since I hate zucchini it’s the one plant that never seems to fail. The wife and kids like it so they over-plant no matter how much I protest.
In the end I have to fill the truck and go to town. I leave them on doorsteps and hide them under hostas in other’s gardens.
Still I think I’ll try some of the “Cue Balls”. They look like a good throwing zucchini. The deer will never know what hit them.
Stunned Donor says
I’m craving something fresh from the garden right now and I’d take every last zucchini you had, but towards the end of July I’d run screaming “No more zucchini! Aaaaaaagh!”
Gardening for Fun says
Those look great. I’m tempted to find some cue ball zuchinis now. Last year I grew squash and only got one. Hopefully, this year will be a better year.
Lisa at Greenbow says
Those cue ball zukes look very appetizing. What do you do with all that squash?? Besides give it away I mean.
The light green Middle-eastern type squashes are very tasty. I think the previously mentioned Madga is one of these. I’ve always liked the patty pan varieties too – they look funky sliced lengthwise and sauteed, or with the top sliced off and stuffed.
I see myself in this post. I always over plant everything, and I wind up putting stuff on people’s porches in the dark of night.
Right now, it is cabbages that I am sharing. I don’t make sauerkraut, so I don’t know how to preserve it. I do have an excellent recipe for freezer slaw, but my freezer isn’t big enough, and we are only 2 peeps here. LOL.
I can’t wait until I am over-burdened with tomatoes!
Carol Michel says
Jodi, I’m not considering cutting back because of how I plan to intermix the plantings in each bed.
Robin’s Nesting Place, maybe this summer when I am ‘flush with zucchini’ we can meet up someplace?
Eric S., You are on the list!
Kate, Hmmmm, I’ll have to think about that, though shipping into Canada might be a problem.
Mark, Gardeners do come up with amusing ways to get rid of zucchini. Don’t tell anyone, but sometimes mine grew so big that I ended up composting them.
Frances, I don’t fertilize but do put compost on all the beds. For the squash bugs, they do show up later in the season, about the time I’m tired of zucchini anyway.
Kathy, the older sister, I think we could work out something!
Wiseacre, The Cue Balls are quite round and would be good for throwing, but let your wife and kids try them first, because they are also very good to eat.
Steven, That’s what everyone seems to scream toward the end of July.
Gardening for Fun, Yes, try again! You never know when you’ll have a good squash year.
Lisa at Greenbow, Mostly I give it away. I do eat some of the squash in main dishes, some I grill. Mostly I give it away.
Entangled, Two mentions of ‘Magda’, so I might have to try it.
Janie, Cabbage is something I don’t grow, but like you I’d love to be over-burdened with homegrown tomatoes right now.
Thanks all for the comments!
Carol, May Dreams Gardens
I had such poor luck with zukes last summer — it was quite unexpected! I definitely would like to grow some different ones this year — do the unusual varieties instead of the standard ones. But honestly, I love zucchini so much that I would be happy with a daily harvest.
garden girl says
Zucchini is good but winter squash is my favorite. I love that it keeps for a long time too. The best winter squash I’ve ever tasted is Red Kuri. I’ve never grown it, and it’s not easy to find in stores, but it is fabulous! So delicious. I love butternut too.